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SEC Chair: Bitcoin ETF Possible, but There’s Work Left to Be Done


cryptopotato.com 10 September 2019 07:33, UTC
Reading time: ~3 m

The topic of an SEC-approved Bitcoin ETF is among the most discussed ones within the cryptocurrency community. While the Commission has already turned down many applications, the one that everyone has its sights on was submitted by Cboe and proposed by VanEck and SolidX. More recently, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton has said that a Bitcoin ETF is possible, but there’s more work to do.

Bitcoin ETF Possible

Speaking on CNBC, the Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Jay Clayton, said that it’s possible that a Bitcoin ETF will be approved. 

Are we any closer to seeing a Bitcoin ETF some day? SEC Chairman Jay Clayton to @CNBC: “yes, but there’s work left to be done” @SEC_News @bobpisani @kellycnbc @CNBCTheExchange #bitcoin #crypto pic.twitter.com/iJP3nn9XHc

— The Exchange (@CNBCTheExchange) September 9, 2019

There have already been plenty of rejections from the Commission on numerous propositions, as well as many delays. 

In May, the SEC delayed yet again the VanEck/SolidX Bitcoin ETF proposed rule change, stating that it needed additional time to conduct its analysis. It was delayed once again in August, and a final decision is expected to come on October 18. 

Many tend to believe that an approval of a Bitcoin ETF by the SEC would catapult the Bitcoin price to new heights. 

Yet, per the latest ruling, interested parties had to submit written arguments on 14 different topics in order to provide further clarity on the matter. 

It’s unclear whether the outcome will be any different this time, given the fact that some of the main concerns seemingly persist. These include price manipulation as well as the unregulated nature of many existing exchanges. 

There’s Work Left to Be Done

After noting that a Bitcoin ETF approval is possible, the Chairman noted that there’s still plenty of work to be done. 

But there’s work left to be done. Those were not trivial questions. How do we know that we can custody and have a hold of those crypto assets? That’s a key question. And an even harder question, given that they trade on largely unregulated exchanges. How can we be sure that those prices aren’t a subject of significant manipulation? Progress is being made but people needed to answer those hard questions for us to be comfortable that this was the appropriate type of product.

Last year, the SEC turned down Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss’s application for a Bitcoin ETF. Back then, one of the commissioners on the panel, Hester M. Peirce, publicly voiced her concerns. 

She said that the approach of the Commission “undermines investor protection by precluding greater institutionalization of the bitcoin market.” Furthermore, she said that the Commission “signals an aversion to innovation that may convince entrepreneurs that they should take their ingenuity to other sectors of our economy, or to foreign markets, where their talents will be welcomed with more enthusiasm.”

In any case, we have a bit more than a month to wait until the SEC votes again on the VanEck/SolidX proposition. 

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